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Fitting Words – A Homeschool Crew Review

I am still in shock that I have a senior in high school this year! Where did all these years go by? There is only one thing harder than grasping you have a senior, it is finding curriculum for them that they love to use.

Roman Roads Media gave us a chance to review Fitting Words Classical Rhetoric (complete program). This is just what I knew Moe Man needed, and he loves using it, so it is a win-win!

What It Is

Fitting Words Classical Rhetoric is a curriculum that will provide high school students and above with a full year’s credit of learning how to communicate by studying the great speeches and giving their own speeches as well.

We received the complete program that comes with the student text, student workbook, video course, exam pack, and answer key. These all complement each other and makes this course a great one, especially for Moe Man.

The student text is a hardcover text with about 400 pages. Each of the pages is clean and uncluttered. This makes it easier to read. There is also room on the edges of the pages for notes if your child likes to take notes, mine doesn’t, but I love to, so noticed this right away!

The workbook is a spiral bound book. There are plenty of well-spaced lines for writing answers to the questions asked for each exercise. Even my large writing son had no problem writing his answers on these spaces.

The video course is my favorite aspect of this program. Moe Man is great at reading, but sometimes he doesn’t remember what he read. We all have those moments when listening to someone read or explain the lesson brings things to light that we would not have noticed before hearing it.

This video course is 4 DVDs that go with each lesson in the textbook. It is recommended to watch the lecture of the lesson first and follow up with reading the lesson after. Not only that but at the end of each lesson, there is a lesson application video to watch. There is even a pre-exam video that walks you through what you need to know for each exam. All the videos helped to reinforce what your child needs to know for each lesson.

The exams packet has review sheets for each exam. They are not study guides, instead just a sheet with the things the student should be able to do and know before the exam. This allows your child to review in the way that is best for them. You will also find all the exams in this packet. The last thing you will see is the speech judging sheets. This is an excellent way for me to be able to judge each individual speech. It also allows the student to know what they will be graded on for each speech.

Finally, we have the answer key. It is just that, a softcover book full of all the answers for the worksheets in the textbook as well as the exams.

How We Used It

At the beginning of the answer key, you will find two optional schedules on how to use this curriculum. There is an option for one or two years.

Since this is Moe Man’s last year of school (Yikes!) we opted for the one year schedule. Using the one year schedule, we see what to do each week and day. The bonus, it is only 4 days per week! Moe Man was happy to see this!

I wrote up what needed to be done on Moe Man’s planner, and with this guide, I could easily do the whole first semester in just about half an hour. After that, he logs in to see what he needs to do and goes. It is strange not to have to help him throughout the day like I used to have to do, but I am glad that he is getting better at doing things on his own, and the videos really help take my place in discussing the main point!

The way the schedule is broken down, it is easy to complete all that is needed each day without the stress of too much to do. At first, Moe Man wasn’t sure about the videos. However, now on lesson 7, he is appreciating the videos to help him with the lessons! They are not long, only lasting about 10-20 minutes, but they are full of the main points and great examples of the topics the kids are learning about!

There are 5 speeches that Moe Man will give throughout this course, the first of which will come after lesson 13. I am looking forward to this because he has a hard time speaking in front of people. I have to decide and split up the speeches between us at home and a good friend of the family. I figure this will give Moe Man a different audience for different speeches, and it will give him a chance to be judged by more than one person.

What We Thought

We loved this curriculum. I loved the simplicity on my end, and Moe Man loved how he was able to do this on his own without my help. He loves being able to do his work on his time instead of mine, so having a curriculum that includes the videos to help him, has helped us both.

The suggested schedule is perfect for Moe Man, and it helps me. I am always one who loves a schedule that is done for me vs. me having to figure one out. One thing I did notice was that the Table of Contents was the same for both the workbook and the answer key. This isn’t a huge deal, but I kept wondering where the schedule was in the workbook, and couldn’t find it.

Finding a curriculum that focuses on the great speeches, like that of Martin Luther King Jr, Patrick Henry, or even Pericles, is hard to come by. But Fitting Words is just that. We love the style of teaching and the use of these and other great speeches to help us learn!

There were others reviewers who used this curriculum or the new Picta Dicta curriculum. Check out those reviews right here:

Classical Rhetoric and Picta Dicta {Roman Roads Media Reviews}
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Grammar and Writing from Hake Publishing – A Homeschool Crew Review

Grammar is one of those subjects that I just don’t know how to teach. I know what I want to say, but how do I explain it to my 3rd-grade son? Hake Publishing has taken all the guesswork out of the teaching process with their Hake/Saxon Grammar and Writing 3 curriculum.

What Is It

This grammar and writing curriculum comes with everything you need to teach your 3rd-grade child the proper usage of grammar and writing. You will get the Teacher Guide, Student Textbook, and Writing Workbook. These books are all you will need to teach your homeschool child all they need to know about grammar and writing.

The Student Textbook includes 111 lessons. After every 10 lessons or so, you will do a writing lesson from the Writing Workbook. The Writing Workbook consists of 21 lessons. Together this makes 132 lessons to cover a whole year of learning.

Your Teacher Guide includes not only the lesson plans for each lesson and the answers to the student workbook but also some extra practice if you notice your child lacking in some areas as well as tests that you will give about every 10 lessons.

You simply need to have your child work through one grammar or writing lesson each day depending on the day and by the end of the year, they will have a firm grasp on all they need to know about grammar and writing for the 3rd-grade level.

How We Used It

We started off by me teaching the lesson to Ray Ray. I would read the prompts from the teacher guide and have him answer the questions before working on the questions for the day. However, he did not like this. He found that he liked to take his book and work on it on his own. As much as I didn’t want to do this, at the same time, I am trying to raise self-learners, so this worked on that aspect.

Each day, Ray Ray would open his student textbook and go through the lesson. I would follow behind him and correct any that he got wrong. If I noticed that he was struggling, I would assign an added practice from the teacher guide for the next day, but I didn’t have to do this very often.

After every ten lessons, there would be a test and a writing assignment. Ray Ray has never really had tests before, so this was a new thing for him. He really liked them. He is a competitive type of person, so he aimed high on these and really wanted to accel at them. I did not tell him about the tests until the day before the first one, so when he had the test, he was a little nervous but aced it without a problem. That means that everything he was working on in the first nine to ten lessons was tested without him knowing that he would be tested, and he had no issue with it at all! He knew all that he needed to know with the simple daily practice that was included in the daily lessons.

What We Thought

After trying something similar with Moe Man in the older ages, I was looking for something like this for Ray Ray. I was happy to find that with Hake Publishing. I love the idea of introducing something new while still including the daily practice of what was already learned. Ray Ray proved that this was a benefit when he took his first test and had no issues with it.

Hake Publishing has given me something that works for my child. The lessons are to the point and allow him to progress without a lot of extra nonsense. We can use this in conjunction with a literature program to round out our language arts curriculum.

I am in love with the fact that Ray Ray can go through the lessons on his own with little help from me. Ray Ray loves that the lessons don’t take him all day and that each day he has a review from the lessons that he has had in the past.

Check out what the other families using Grammar and Writing 3 thought about this program by clicking this image:

Hake/Saxon Grammar and Writing 3 {Hake Publishing Reviews}
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Learn to Read with Reading Kingdom – A Homeschool Crew Review

Reading is one of those topics that scare me. I always worry about how I am doing, or not doing. When Little Miss was getting ready to read, I noticed a few issues. However, with Reading Kingdom, the worries I once had, have disappeared!

Reading Kingdom is an online program that works on teaching your child how to read. This program is geared towards ages 3-10 and will help your child work on reading and writing up to a third-grade level (Lexile 750).

Reading requires six different areas, sequencing, writing, sounds, meaning, grammar, and comprehension. Most other programs only focus on sounds, but Reading Kingdom focuses on all six of these areas.

While it is an online program, it is easy for kids to navigate. I don’t have to do anything other than log into our account, and Little Miss takes over from there. She is taken to where she left off and is able to continue on with the click of a button.

It is recommended that your child logs in and uses this program 4 days each week. When you log in, you can see how many days your child has been using the program on average. You are also able to see your child’s current level, their percentage that they have completed and their performance level.

This was the week after great grandpa passed away, so we had missed a few days.

If you want, you can even sign up to get a weekly email of your child’s activity each week.

Once your child logs in, they are taken to where they left off last. The lessons take about 20-30 minutes depending on how fast the child works. They will have about 10-30 activities to complete to finish the lesson for the day.

30 may seem like a lot of activities, but most of these are listen to the computer say the focus word of the lesson and type it. This is simple, and your child will progress through the lesson rather quickly.

After learning what the word looks like and how to write it, your child will be able to start using the word in sentences. The computer will tell them exactly what to do each step of the way. They are not supposed to have help from mom or dad, and every time I stepped in to watch Little Miss, I would hear, “Mommy, you can’t help me. Go away.”

I had initially planned on having both Little Miss and Ray Ray use this program, but Ray Ray can already read at a 6th-grade level. After trying this for a few days, we opted to let him step down from using this as it was too easy.

Little Miss, however, loved using this program. She would beg me to use this first this upon waking up. She would work through the day’s lesson and have so much fun spelling the words she learned each day. We had no issues with her logging in and getting through the lessons. Our other favorite part, if she had to stop the lesson halfway through for some reason, she would not have to start over. When she logged back in later in the day, it would take her right to where she left off!

As Little Miss continued through the activities on Reading Kingdom, I noticed her spelling more words throughout the day, not just when she was on the computer. She would be able to draw a picture and actually write the word of what she drew! This is huge for me because I was very worried about her not spelling or sounding things out just a few short months ago!

In just 15-20 minutes a day, I have seen Little Miss learn to read with Reading Kingdom!

Check out these reviews from other members of the Homeschool Review Crew:

Learn to Read with Reading Kingdom OR ASD Reading {Reviews}
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Illuminating Literature: Characters in Crisis – A Homeschool Crew Review

I have always enjoyed a good book. One that pulls me in and gets me interested. Little did I know, that teaching a teenage boy about the other side of a story, the terms and devices of literature, could be so hard. We struggled with learning all the good parts of the novels and stories I wanted to him to learn from, until we found Illuminating Literature: Characters in Crisis from Writing with Sharon Watson.

We have had to chance to try many of Sharon’s other curriculum, including her Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide, so I was excited to use this with Moe Man!

What It Is

Illuminating Literature: Characters in Crisis is a Christian High School Literature curriculum. It is a full year’s worth of lesson and will earn your child a full credit. For this review, we used the student textbook, the teacher’s guide, quiz and answer manual and the novel notebook (which is free).

During this curriculum, your child will read a variety of works, from short works to actual books. The short works are included within the student textbook, but the books will need to be purchased separately. Sharon does show the recommended versions. These are Frankenstein, Silas Marner, Much Ado About Nothing, Sense and Sensibility, The Hobbit and a student choice of biography/autobiography.

How Did We Use It

There are many different ways to use this curriculum, as your literature course in your homeschool, as a part of your homeschool co-op or as a book of the month style club. We picked the homeschool literature course. Upon doing so, I spent some time looking over the teacher’s guide and setting up our schedule.

The teacher’s guide sets up the lessons in an easy to understand way for you. There is a suggested reading and homework plan that will allow you to see how long each book will take. Your child will start off by learning about the book and the author during their first week. They will learn about literary terms and devices.

The second and third weeks are spent reading the book, and working in the novel notebook. These are the fun weeks, I had Moe Man reading for all 14 days instead of just Monday-Friday, only because that meant his readings were smaller each day.

Finishing up the last week of the month, you finish up the rest of the lessons. These include quizzes like the “Yes, I read it” Quiz and the Literary Terms Quiz that can be found online or in the Quiz and Answer Manual. Your child will also work on one activity to go with the book. These activities range from writing or rewriting parts of the book, watching a movie drawing a picture or creating music or arts. These activities make it fun, no matter your child’s learning style or interests.

What We Thought

Sharon Watson can take a “boring” book and make it come alive for my son! He has always been a reluctant reader, finding a book now and again that he would get lost in. But now, he is able to enjoy new styles of writing. He finds out about the time period, the author and the characters. He has the Novel Notebook to help him chapter by chapter.

I love that this is basically an open and go curriculum on my end. I check in weekly with Moe Man, and I make sure to have the books ordered or put on hold at the library, and I love talking with him using the discussion questions, but the rest he is able to do independently. This is great, especially for such an in-depth type of curriculum!

Moe Man also loves that it is independent. He loves to sit down and do things at his pace and his time. He loves that the lessons are not super long and they don’t require him to write all the time. He has found that he prefers to take the quizzes on paper, as he doesn’t feel as pressured while doing them.

We were not the only family to check out the new Illuminating Literature: Characters in Crisis. Check out what the other families had to share by clicking here:

Illuminating Literature: Characters in Crisis {Writing with Sharon Watson Reviews}
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Reading Eggs – A Homeschool Crew Review

One of the important things to teach our kids is how to read. Sometimes they don’t want to, other times they just need some motivation to help them out. We have fallen in love with Reading Eggs and the fun online learning and activates that we have found there!

Reading Eggs is an online program that keeps your kids interested in learning to read by engaging them with games, songs and rewards. These help to motivate the children to keep going. This is set up like a game, and earning eggs or cards (in Reading Eggspress) makes your kids push through and learn.

There are three different levels in Reading Eggs. You start off with Reading Eggs Junior. This is great for the new learners from 2-4 years old. This helps build their pre-reading skills and in a fun way. Reading Eggs is for 4-7 years old and starts lessons on a self-paced mode. Once your child has mastered reading, they move on to Reading Eggspress for 7-13 years old. This section takes the reading and looks at the meaning.

For this review, Little Miss used Reading Eggs to get her reading and Ray Ray used Reading Eggspress to help build his reading skills further. We used this as our language arts curriculum for 3-4 days out of the week.

Each of the lessons is self-paced. The kids are able to log in under their own user name and go when they want to. The first thing they did was a placement test to see where they should be in the program. Both children skipped many lessons, and were placed in the area that was challenging, yet they were able to do.

Each self-paced lesson consisted of numerous different activities. These ranged from games, reading and learning. Ray Ray being in the older section of this also had quizzes as a part of his lessons. These quizzes were really comprehension of what he had just read, but in his mind, they were quizzes!

Little Miss is just like her big brother, as in, she doesn’t want to learn to read. She fights me. I don’t really worry about it, knowing they will learn when they want, but when I logged her in on our Free 4 Week Trial, she wouldn’t stop! She wanted to keep going, keep learning! I wasn’t going to stop her!

After a week of using Reading Eggs, I noticed her picking up on reading. She paid more attention to the sounds of the words we were speaking to her and she was begging me to do her school! She wanted to learn to read! For once, she wanted to learn how to read! I just stood back and watched. Something was clicking for her and I loved watching that happen!

After two weeks, TWO weeks, she was reading sentences, and simple books! This girl went from not having an interest in reading to wanting to read and loving it! Why? Because she played a fun game on the computer and finished the “level”. Because that level lead to the next and she wanted to see what she could earn next, so she did the next lesson.

There is something new on Reading Eggs as well! A Homeschool Guide. This guide is for Kindergarten to 2nd Grade. Each guide contains 36 weeks of lessons mapped out with Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies. Some of the lessons are online lessons using Reading Eggs, or Math Seeds, but others are reading the books in the Reading Eggs Library. This is a general topic, and you can build off it however you would like.

With quick learning, and simple sight words, reading a sentence starts early. This is enough motivation to keep your child interested in what they are doing. Little Miss loved that she could read so quickly and this was exciting for her. She wouldn’t stop! I didn’t make her! If you have a child who is struggling to read, or one who fights your current lessons, you need to give Reading Eggs a try! Don’t forget, you are able to use this 14 day FREE trial to see before you make a decision.

Reading Eggs
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Charlotte’s Web E-Study Guide – A Homeschool Crew Review

My family loves to read. We love to find a good book and sit down to enjoy it. But we want to learn more about reading and the book itself while we read it. Finding a study guide that helps us learn more about the book we are reading is just what Progeny Press has given to us with the Charlotte’s Web E-Guide.

The Charlotte’s Web E-Guide is geared for students in grades 4-6. This E-Guide covers everything from comprehension, literature and vocabulary. Not only that, but it is a Christian based study guide that includes references to the Bible throughout the guide.

This guide starts out with a note to the instructor, an about the author and illustrator and synopsis of the book like most of the Progeny Press E-Guides. This is a great way for me to be up to speed on what the book is about. This is also a great way to introduce the book to your children. After all of that, you are given some great pre-reading activities. This is a great way to get your child ready and excited to read the book!

The rest of the study guide is divided into small groups of chapters. There are about 3 chapters for every set of questions. I like that there are not questions for each individual chapter. This makes Ray Ray need to focus on what he is reading and not just breeze through the chapters and questions.

The questions start out with vocabulary words. Sometimes there are multiple choice questions, writing your own definition, finding synonyms, etc. This keeps things interesting and never boring. After going over the vocabulary we get into the questions. These questions make sure that your child will have read the chapters. They are not too hard, but do require that your child reads the book.

My favorite part about the study guide is the thinking about the story and the digging deeper questions. These take the thinking a step farther. They make your child really think about what they want to say, and how to say it. They also bring things from the book to your child’s life.

My favorite part about the e-guide is that it is interactive. While this may not be something others are concerned about, my Ray Ray hates to write. He can draw, he can color, he can type, but when I ask him to write, I get met with frustration, crying and tantrums, and then there is Ray Ray! Having an interactive guide means that he can type his answers and we have no frustration!

Once you are done reading the book and working through the questions in the study guide, you get to finish up with an overview of the story. This allows you to talk about the main conflict, climax and resolution. This is a great way, in my opinion to finish a book, along with some character study, theme, science and Bible! I look forward to finishing this book with Ray Ray and going over these!

Finally, finishing up the study guide is Ideas for Post-Reading Activities. These activities are simple, yet fun. They are a great way to finish up the book and have fun at the same time. No one likes to just end a book, so ending it with a project is a great closing to it!

There is reading a book, and learning from the book. Progeny Press takes the reading of a book and turns into learning from the book. Using the study guide helps us learn more about what we are reading and the actual literature. We love using Progeny Press with our books and look forward to using it again in the future. In the meantime, check out what these other reviewers had to say about their experience with the study guides:

Study Guides for Literature {Progeny Press Reviews}
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The Bears on Hemlock Mountain Study Guide – A Homeschool Crew Review

One of my goals as a parent is to make sure my children know great pieces of literature. I don’t just want them to read the book and move on, I want them to really know the literature. Progeny Press is a great company that provides study guides to these great pieces of literature, helping your child really know all about the book. We had the chance to check out The Bears on Hemlock Mountain E-Guide.

This study guide for The Bears on Hemlock Mountain is geared towards grades 1-3. You will have background information, Before-you-read Activities, vocabulary and questions for the chapters along with fun games and activities to complete after you have completed the book. This is just what I was looking for when I said I wanted something to help them really know the great pieces of literature!

After receiving this E-Guide, I took the time to read the Note to Instructor. While I have used these guides before, I wanted to refresh myself and make sure nothing had changed. After the note, I found a Synopsis of the book. This is great, because, while I have heard of the book, I had never actually read it yet. This gave me an idea of what Ray Ray would be reading and learning about. Finally, I found an About the Author section as well as some background information about the book.

We were finally ready to start! Well, sort of. First, we needed to have some fun with our Before-You-Read Activities. There were six activities listed for us to pick from. We could do them all, or just one, or as many as we wanted. There is nothing stating that we even needed to do any before we started out reading. I had Ray Ray work on a few of these, including listening to birdsongs we found online and checking out different pictures of animal’s tracks. We hadn’t had a lot of rain during this time, so finding actual animal tracks didn’t work for us.

Now, we were ready to read! We had an idea of a few things we would be reading, and also what Jonathan may have been hearing and seeing in the book. I figured that we would do our reading over a day or two, following that up with a day or two of the study guide. I found out rather quickly that Ray Ray’s reading level was way above this book, so we did the reading in one day instead of two. However, his willingness to work on writing or questions took us about three days instead of two.

The first day after reading our chapters, we spent time on the vocabulary section. This ranged from section to section, sometimes we would tell what a word meant in a sentence, other times we would simply match the word to the definition. Each time it was different, but it kept us on our toes and the boring routine wasn’t there!

Questions followed the vocabulary. These are comprehension questions that make us think about what we read. Not just who did what and when, rather, deciding how characters reacted by the words we were reading. Trying to figure out if something would have been difficult for Jonathan and why or why not. These questions dig deeper and make us look at the book a little different.

Some of the questions would also include Bible verses, relating the story and the Bible to each other. These questions also help to bring the story, the Bible and what the kids face all together as one.

After we finished our reading, we had the chance to check out After-you-read Activities. Once again, you can decide how many if any that you would like to include in your homeschool. Ray Ray ended this book, by learning a little more about bears and hibernation. After he spent time learning about this, he was able to take his notes and tell mom, dad, and the two little sisters more about it in an oral report.

I loved this study guide! I loved how easy it was for me to use. There was little prep needed, other than the before and after you read activities, and this was only if you wanted to do the extras. I loved the depths of the questions. While they aren’t extremely hard to figure out for the 1-3 grades, they do require thought to be put into it. The writing place is large enough for their handwriting level. There was plenty of room to write the answers in. Now if I could just get Ray Ray to not fuss over writing and just do it, it would be better for me!

Because Ray Ray does not like to write that much, I did alter some of the work in the question section. I would allow him to verbally answer half of the questions while making him write the other half of the answers. This helped him through some of the battles, which made me happier.

Ray Ray didn’t like the writing of this study guide, but he loved the book and was happy to verbally answer the questions. I watched him actually slowing down and thinking about the answers, this alone was all that I was worried about. I don’t care if he can write it, I just care that he is thinking about it, and he is!

Progeny Press has many study guides for many ages and books. Check out a few more of them here from other members of the crew!

Study Guides for Literature {Progeny Press Reviews}
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Phonics Museum from Veritas Press – A Homeschool Crew Review

Finding a program that helps kids read from an early age and making it fun is not always easy to do. We have tried a few over the years, and while there are many that we enjoy, there is one that stands out for someone as young as Baby Girl (2 years old). Veritas Press has come out with a fun program, the Phonics Museum App, that makes learning to read a game instead of a lesson!

The Phonics Museum App is a fun learning app aimed for children between the ages of 3-7 to teach reading in a multi-sensory approach. Your child will learn the letters, their sounds and how to draw them with their fingers as they progress through the games, videos, songs and interactions that are set up for them.

This app is currently available through the iTunes store and you will want to make sure your Apple device meets the required compatibility. We had first tried this on our iPad Mini, but soon found out that it didn’t work that well. Once trying it on the iPad Air, we had minimal issues and were able to enjoy this program.

We started this program with Little Miss (6 years old) in mind. We soon found out that even though they say up to seven, that this program was too “little” for her. She easily became bored and didn’t want to use it. But she also already knows her letter sounds. If your 6 or 7-year-old has issues with the letter sounds, this would be a great way for them to work on it!

Once I figured out that Little Miss was “too old” for this, I attempted it with Baby Girl. She is on the younger age of the recommended age, being 2 ½ instead of 3, but she LOVED it! When I found that she loved it, I rolled with it, as homeschool moms have learned to do over the years, and let her have at it!

The museum allows you to do three different things when you first enter, you can play games, check out your trophy room or do your lessons. However, we learned right away, that to play the games they must be unlocked through your lesson. This is a great way to review what you have learned later by replaying these games.

While Baby Girl is below the age recommendation, she would sit with me or daddy and we would help her with some of the tasks she could not handle on her own yet. We would sit with her and watch her work on her lesson path. Each lesson path has a combination of videos with Mrs. Biddle and games to play to work on letter sounds.

The lessons are fun and silly which drew Baby Girl’s attention to them. The videos were short, yet to the point. They not only taught us about the letters and sounds, but history and art. The songs were catchy and made the learning that much easier.

The games are based on mastery. They repeat the games, but in a different style. They work on mastering the sounds of the letters. This is where Baby Girl needed a little help. She tried a few times on her own, but was too young to do this on her own. The other games we have encountered so far are games to help “writing” the letters with fingertips. This is Baby Girl’s favorite game! She loves working on writing, and I love to know that she is getting used to the idea of actually writing the letters.

While we had a lot of fun with this app, we did notice that there were some freezing issues. Once the app froze, it would get out of the game and we would have to re-do what we had just done. I don’t know if this was an issue with our device, but it wasn’t that often, so I blame technology more than the app itself!

While I started this review with Little Miss in mind, I am glad to see Baby Girl starting some learning by working on her letters and phonics. This is something that we focus on, but love to make fun. This is the perfect way to do just that with someone her age. I don’t want her to feel like school, heck she is only 2, but I do want to get a good foundation started as soon as I can!

Want to check out more about Phonics Museum? Check out the other reviews right here:

Phonics Museum App {Veritas Press Reviews}
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The Crafty Classroom – A Homeschool Crew Review

Making school fun for an active 6-year-old girl is interesting to say the least. She wants to do worksheets, but she wants to have fun. She doesn’t want a lot of work, but she loves the feeling of completing something. What in the world do you do? You head over to The Crafty Classroom and check out their Learn to R.E.A.D. Curriculum Notebook and the R.E.A.D. Review Pack.

Little Miss is my worker bee! She loves having the chance to do worksheets. She has always loved doing worksheets with her big brothers since she could hold a crayon. Finding fun curriculum for her has always been a challenge, as she wants the fun worksheets, but she wants variety in what she does. The worksheets in this R.E.A.D Curriculum are exactly what she wants!

I will warn you right away, there is a lot of printing for this curriculum. I am only printing what we need each week on Sunday night. I also need to tell you, most of printing is in black and white and not a lot of color.

There is a Daily Schedule included in the introduction. This program is suggested to be used 4 days a week taking Friday off. This is a nice pace for Little Miss and allows us time to do fun stuff on Fridays. This can be easily adapted to take any other day off during the week, which we have had to do when Daddy has some doctor appointments.

Before you even begin, there is a Pre-Assessment that you give to your child. This will see if your child is ready to begin the program. This includes checking to see if your child can identify the Upper and Lower-Case letters and their sounds.

Once you are ready to begin, you can follow the schedule for the list of things to do with your child. Every day begins with a Daily Warm-Up. This can be done in a few different ways. You can print a new sheet every day, in color or black and white, or you can use a page protector and dry-erase marker and clear the sheet every morning. We opted to use the color sheet and page protector option. We also have a blank calendar that we fill in every day.

After our warm-up, we got started on our lessons each day. We have done all the worksheets at once, and we have split them up throughout the day. Both of these options worked for us, it just depended on the day for Little Miss. Each week the lessons are the same, making it easy for Little Miss to know what to anticipate each day of the week.

Two days a week, Tuesday and Thursday, would do a fun Interactive Grammar lesson. This was something new for Little Miss and she loved learning the basics of grammar. These worksheets were different each time and instead of keeping them with our other worksheets, we put these in our Language Arts Interactive Notebook. This is a fun way for Little Miss to sit down and review by paging through the notebook instead of getting lost with her other pages.

We decided to keep all of our R.E.A.D. papers together in a three-ring binder. I keep them separated by week and word family, but by doing this we are able to quickly review something if I notice Little Miss having an issue.

Every 5 weeks, we have a review. During this review time, we get to practice all the sight words and word families that we have learned by reading fun little books. Little Miss is in love with this first review week and the fun new books we have been reading each day. I love that she is reading and not just looking at the pictures to guess what the words say!

Little Miss is in love with her new school. She loves that she was reading right away from the first day, and this has encouraged her to keep going. The variety of worksheets is just the right amount and keeps her from getting bored, but also helps her master the sight words and word family of the week. While she loves all the worksheets, her favorite by far is the Spinner Winner worksheet, which she would do every day if I let her!

While there is a little printing involved with this curriculum, I have no issues with that. I love that the pages are black and white, and actually have Little Miss color the pictures on some of them. Oh, and the cute little books! These are so fun to sit down with Little Miss and listen as she reads to me!

The Crafty Classroom can be found on social media here:



They also carry more than just this curriculum, check out the reviews of their other products right here:

Crafty Classroom {Reviews}

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Language Arts for High School – 10 Days of Homeschooling High School

10 Days of Homeschooling High School

Wow, what a week it has been. I had ever intention to share with you about curriculum this week. And I dropped the ball! I had some things come up, and I feel bad that I let you down for the week. To make that up to you, I am going to start and continue to finish my 10 Days of Homeschooling High School…a little, but still here!

10 Days of Homeschooling High School

Today I want to talk a little about Language Arts. When it comes to high school language arts, there are so many extras you need to think about. Not only do you want to make sure your high school student is able to figure out their grammar, but you want to add in writing, speaking, listening, and some great literature as well.

You can have your options of what to pick when it comes to homeschooling your child. You can get the boxed curriculum where everything is there for you, all you need to do is open and go. This is great for some families, but others need more independence when it comes to school and curriculum. There are a lot of great options for whichever way you want to attack the Language Arts curriculum.

We have tried a few different things for Language Arts in our homeschool. We have had some good experiences, and some that we have learned from. I don’t say bad, because we learn from it and either find a way to make it work or move on. I want to share some of our favorites with you.

We have had the chance to check out the Easy Grammar Ultimate Series for Moe Man. This is a great book that went over simple topics each day to build on what your child has already learned and the new things they are to learn. We loved adding this in to the beginning of our lessons and didn’t mind that it only took a few minutes.

If you want to find some great ways to study literature with your high school child, there are many programs that work. We have tried Hewitt Homeschooling. Hewitt Homeschooling is a full credit in Literature and is about 4 books per program. Your child will not just read a book and answer comprehension questions, they will also learn about the styles of writing and work on writing papers themselves.

If you want a full curriculum, there are lots of options available. We have used a couple and plan to use more in the next few years with Moe Man. We have recently started Monarch online for Moe Man. While this is a full curriculum, I have found it lacks in the great literature. Adding in the Hewitt Homeschooling has given me what I want when it comes to finishing this curriculum with a little added reading and writing.

Another full curriculum that we have tried is Easy Peasy Homeschool. This one was great! I love it, and would love to do it myself if I had the time. However, for Moe Man and his learning, this was a little above him. The writing and reading assignments are great and require your child to do some real thinking. They way this is set up, you would have to grade the assignments, or trust your child that they were doing a good job at correcting their own papers the right way.

We have tried many different curricula when it comes to Language Arts. Moe Man loves to read, but the other things that come with the subject trouble him. Finding that just right one is sometimes hard, but knowing that you have the option to change when your child needs to is a gift.

What is your favorite Language Arts curriculum for the High School age?


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